Friday, 25 January 2013

SMILE with Krishna - Bhagavad Gita Chapter 18 Summary

Bhagavad-Gita Chapter 18 - Summary

S - Summary of Karma-yoga (Verses 1-18)
M - Modes of Nature (Verses 19 -40)
I - Ideal worker (Verses 41-55)
L- Love of God (Verses 56-66)
E - End Result (Verses 67-78)

What is Renunciation?
- Using our returns to serve (getting into the habit of giving) in the service of the Lord and the mission.
- Giving up ones likes and dislikes (I don't like this work&  I like that work because it is simpler is not renunciation)
- Change ones attitude (although the senses & body demand and we make all endeavors to achieve that, but the ultimate deciding factor is Paramatma. So we should write our plans in pencil and give God the eraser because everything is in God's hand)
- The lord is beyond all our desires, endeavors, body and soul so we should remember we are not the doer 

The Modes of Nature

Mode of Goodness: doing the work in a sense of detachment.
Mode of Passion: giving up work due to the trouble caused due to work, family; 
Mode of Ignorance: giving up work out of illusion;

Mode of Goodness: determination for the right cause - serving God, devotees, people, society (never give up)
Mode of Passion:determined to get their desires fulfilled
Mode of Ignorance: determined by doing nothing - success in life depends on dreams - so they just sleep

Goodness: poison in the beginning but nectar in the end (faithful to wife and family, stop bad habits, quitting things harmful to health, chanting) - no pain no gain
Passion: nectar in the beginning and ends with poison (sensual indulgence but leads to health issues, broken families)
Ignorance: poison in beginning and end (laziness)

How to be ideal worker?
1. Know who you are i.e your Varna
2. Minimize the malpractice/fault on the work you have to do - be regretful 
3. Use the results to serve Krishna
4. Always Chant the holy name which will purify us of the reactions of the things we hate to do
5. Be yourself and stop comparing and have the desire to want what others have

How to understand God?
- God can only be understood by devotion and not by analysis (only when you love Krishna, He is revealed)

What is surrender?
- I'm helpless Krishna and there are factors beyond my control
- To do all that is favorable to my spiritual practice and not do all that which is not favorable

We can understand God's will through Guru. How to identify Guru?
- It is not based on blind faith or mundane following. A balance of scriptural knowledge, worldly experience and connection to Krishna within the heart - He is Guru.

Who is dearest to Krishna?
Anyone who shares this message of the Gita to others, sponsoring Gita etc., (Krishna loves to be glorified because he knows that the message of the Gita will benefit others)

End Result:
1. Moving from my will to God's will: Gita began by saying that I want to do things my way and at the end Arjuna says that I will do what You want (God knows that is best for us more than we know what is good for us)
2. Spiritual joy
3. Opulence, victory, power and morality

[From a lecture by HG Gaur Gopal Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty on Jan 14, 2013 on Bhagavad Gita Ch 18]

Spiritual Culture - Common Factor for all Asramas

Śrīla Vyāsadeva was a householder, yet his residential place is called an āśrama. An āśrama is a place where spiritual culture is always foremost. It does not matter whether the place belongs to a householder or a mendicant. The whole varṇāśrama system is so designed that each and every status of life is called an āśrama. This means that spiritual culture is the common factor for all. The brahmacārīs, the gṛhasthas, the vānaprasthas and the sannyāsīs all belong to the same mission of life, namely, realization of the Supreme. Therefore none of them are less important as far as spiritual culture is concerned. The difference is a matter of formality on the strength of renunciation. The sannyāsīs are held in high estimation on the strength of practical renunciation.

[Srimad Bhagavatam Purport 1.7.2]

Srila Prabhupada's Assurance

"Do not be disturbed. There is no cause for anxiety. You are doing your best to serve Krishna, that is very much appreciated, so do not lose enthusiasm out of frustration, that will spoil everything. Krishna Consciousness means we should always be satisfied and happy, not that we must work something impossible, becoming overburdened, and then because we are unhappy by so much trouble we lose enthusiasm altogether and give up all hope. No, if too much endeavour is there, that is to be avoided. By all means we must preserve our spiritual status, that is the point, not that we are mad after big buildings, many devotees, life-members, this, that—no, these are only ways to engage the devotees so that they may apply the principles of devotional living to some kind of work for practical realization of these principles. It is not the result of the work we want. If only one person daily, if we sincerely preach to such one person in a day, that is sufficient, never mind big, big programmes. So my request to you is that you do not be bothered by these things, and I have instructed Tamala Krishna and Syamasundara to send you men, so they will do it, rest assured. Krishna does not like to see His sincere devotee suffer or become frustrated or depressed. He will not stand idly by in any such case, so do not fear on that account. Krishna has got some plan for you, always think in that way, and very soon He will provide everything to your heart's desire."

Srila Prabhupada letter to Tejyas, Dec. 19, 1972